Phone that works on all networks? Not necessarily symotaniously.

Russell Sears sears at
Tue Aug 19 23:04:56 CEST 2008

Jeff Sadowski wrote:
> I understand the openmoko phone works on GSM networks? I think I read
> somewhere that Verizon uses CDMA and not GSM. Are there plans to have
> a phone that will connect to a CDMA network? Is there a way to
> incorporate say like a module to add/remove to use any cellular
> network you want? Not that I want to use verizon or at&t or any
> network in particular but I would like a choice. At this point in time
> I hate cell phones and cell phone networks; I have high hopes for this
> project to maybe standardize the industry. One OS to rule them all. As
> is now the same cell phone for different companies works way different
> example: a razor for verizon is way different then a razor for AT&T. I
> was looking at the menus and options and they are so different I
> wouldn't even consider it the same phone. 

Yeah; that's one reason I swore to never buy a phone from a network 
again.  My old phone had an alarm clock feature.  Occasionally, the cell 
network company updated the OS and fixed/broke the alarm clock without 
warning.  Not good. :(

> I'd like to see the same
> options across the board from at&t to verizon to tmoble ... The one
> thing I couldn't find on the AT&T interface for the razor was the
> Airplane mode. Airplane mode turns off the radio so that if you are in
> a place with no reception you don't waist your batteries and can still
> use your phone for the other tasks like snapping a quick picture when
> you don't have your real camera next to you. Or an alarm clock or
> calculator or ...
> I live in Albuquerque NM I'm wondering if I even have a choice of any
> networks that I could use the openmoko project with. I would like to
> get started with it. It interests me.

AT&T and T-Mobile both use GSM, which is standard pretty much everywhere 
except the US (though some parts of the GSM network run at a different 
frequency in the US, so you want the 850 model).

Here's TMobile's coverage map:

It looks like they'd work for you.  AT&T probably has coverage where you 
are too.  The only thing that ties the Freerunner to one GSM network or 
another is the sim card, which can be easily replaced/moved between phones.

Verizon uses a different network technology, so it would require 
different modem hardware (and probably dialer software, drivers, 
etc...).  Also, it would only be usable by some fraction of the US 
market, so my guess it that it wouldn't make financial sense for 
openmoko to produce one...


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